So you are wondering how on earth all those other Fantasy Rugby teams in your conference have got team values approaching $20 million when your team value has slipped below the $15 million you were given to start with?
A quick scan down the top 50 teams shows that only 5 of them have team values of less than the starting $15 million and most of them are worth well in excess of $16 million. While there isn't a direct correlation between the value of your team and the number of fantasy points they have scored it certainly gives you a lot more flexibility in chasing the top talent if you have some extra cash to throw around!
The first thing you need to understand is why player values fluctuate at all. To quote the "How to Play" section of the Fantasy Rugby site:
"The Transfer Market operates much the same as a commodities market. As players are bought and sold their values rise and fall accordingly."
Well that makes sense but it's not that easy to pick the best time to buy and sell.
The most important thing to understand is that a player's value is largely related to his popularity, which is the number of Fantasy Rugby teams that own him at a given time. (with some internal weighting based on his status in the rugby world, which is why Tony Brown never dropped below $2 million when the Highlanders had a BYE in week 5)
So if you buy a player before everyone else cottons on that he is a good performer then as more people sign him up his value will increase and so will your overall team value.
Bearing that in mind we here are a few tips that we have learnt in the Rugbyheads
(for the record my team, Cones Crusaders, is currently valued at over $20 million!)
1) It doesn't always hold that a popular player is a good contributor in the fantasy rugby world. A lot of the Superstar players play in positions that aren't always consistent producers fantasy-wise. Jonah Lomu, Matt Burke and Andrew Merhtens are good examples. Don't just buy a player based on his name/status.
2) Timing is everything. Make sure you know when your players have BYE weeks and offload them ASAP that week, before their value drops as everyone else offloads them too. Conversely if a team is coming back off a BYE weekend then get in early to snap up their stars.
3) One thing most people don't realise is that when the team freeze for the next round occurs at 12pm on Friday transfers start for the following round. Therefore if you have guys that aren't going to be playing next weekend then you should offload them then, not wait until the following Monday when the results come out and the masses all reorganize their teams. These guys will still count for you on the current round as the teams are already frozen.
4) While the injury reports are important reading so that you know who to avoid picking they are also very valuable information for gauging when a potential fantasy star might become valuable again. A good example of this is Norm Berryman. Norm is potentially a good fantasy producer but because he has been injured he is relatively cheap at the moment. If he has a few more games like last weekend people are bound to pick up on him and his value with increase.
5) Of course knowing when to sell is just as important as knowing when to buy. As well as making sure you give a guy the flick before his team has a BYE you should keep an eye on holding onto players that are not a lock on holding their place in the starting lineup for their team.
Braam van Straaten is a great example of this. He was a big performer for the Stormers in the first two rounds of the season and as such his ownership% and value climbed up to 15.49% and $2,175,000 at the start of round 3. Unfortunately the Stormers lost in round 2 and Braam was one of the casualties of the loss, losing his starting spot. Once owners worked this out they dropped him too and his value plummeted back down to $1,682,500.
If you had him on your roster during that time then your salary cap shrunk with it, if you had two or three guys in this situation then you now understand why you only have $13 million to play with!
Hopefully these tips will help you improve your teams value and in turn your whole team.